“Soft despotism is a term coined by Alexis de Tocqueville describing the state into which a country overrun by "a network of small complicated rules" might degrade. Soft despotism is different from despotism (also called 'hard despotism') in the sense that it is not obvious to the people."

Sunday, April 05, 2015

Never has an American President done such good work and been bashed so hard. History will not be kind to the far-right GOP extremists and their titular head Israeli PM Netanyahu

Republicans  Preferring Israeli and AIPAC Interests to American Interests:

If this were based on rationality, it would be one thing, but it isn’t. The Republican Party is the  party of Christian fundamentalism and the force behind Christian passion for Israel can be found in their Bible. Eighty-two percent of white evangelicals believe Israel was given to the Jews by God. Among Jews, only 40 percent find a divine hand behind a Jewish Israel. The largest concentration of Evangelicals in the World can be found in the United States, with 26.8% of the U.S. population or 94.38 million. Nearly half of the Republican Party are highly motivated religious zealots. The Democrats less so at 19%
Many evangelicals firmly believe biblical prophecy that Israel’s existence is necessary to set the stage for the return of Jesus Christ. In other words and as insane as this is, Israel has to die for The Christian Dream to come alive! Some alliance.


  1. AdLib On February - 18 - 2015

    There was a very enlightening article in The Atlantic yesterday by Graeme Wood that explored deeply into the ISIS movement, delving into what drives them, their recruits, and their momentum. It pointed a big finger at the importance of first recognizing that this is an Islam-driven situation.

    When the Right Wing attacked President Obama for not identifying ISIS as reflecting Islam, it seemed at first to just another knee-jerk attack against Obama. But even a broken and racist clock can be right once in a while despite it being for the wrong reason.

    After reviewing this article, one may come away with the intended effect of seeing it as critical that ISIS is openly viewed as one version of Islam and in doing so, its motivations, methods and goals become more understandable and easier to fight and defeat.

    Does President Obama really believe that, as he has described them, ISIS is “unIslamic”?

    It is an assumption to say this but it would not seem far fetched to view what he is doing as a supportive gesture to the majority of Muslims who do not support the ISIS extremists and protect them from bigotry. He also may be reaching out to them by not allowing ISIS to tarnish the perception of their religion as a whole.

    Even though it may be well intentioned, this may be a costly mistake. When you repeat an untruth enough, even for a good reason, you may start to believe it.

    As the above-mentioned article details, the beheadings, the religious purgings of fellow Muslims, and most importantly, the capturing of land all comes from ISIS’ extremist views of what is written in the Koran. To beat them, the U.S. and the world first have to recognize why they do what they do and then they can target them where they are most vulnerable because of that.

    There is no ISIS without a Caliphate and a Caliph. These are Islamic-dictated requirements, there must be land held and a Caliph declared who comes from the right bloodline. Again, all of this comes from The Koran. The logic is inescapable, ISIS is an Islamic group. Their views may not be shared by a majority but they are Islamic. There are different versions of Christianity, some of which represent a small minority of Christians, but all are viewed as Christians.

    If we are going to defeat an enemy of a majority of all religions including other Muslims, we first have to accept the concept that extremists in a religion still are motivated by and devout followers of their version of that religion.

    1. This is also where the U.S. and President Obama run into an obstacle.

      There is a pattern already established in America. Extremist Christians who are a very vocal and very energized voting block in America are also distanced from being representative of Christianity. They exhibit a penchant for racism, chauvinism, war mongering and supporting, threatening and/or committing violence against those they view as enemies to their religious beliefs (for example, see some of the Dominionist articles at PlanetPOV including: Dominionists – The Mighty Oak Is Not Always a Good Thing, God, Guns, Greed – Face of Dominionism and Coalition Of Church And State: Destroyed From Within.)

      Even though most Christians oppose the terrible things Dominionists represent, as ISIS is to Islam, Dominionists are Christians and a part of Christianity. Unfortunately, since religion is such a minefield for politicians, Americans have become accustomed to disassociating religious extremists from their religion so as not to offend mainstream religious voters. The problem here is the same with ISIS, since they are viewed not as members of a version of their actual religion but as crazy extremists unrelated to their religion, they can’t be confronted effectively on the ground they are operating on.


    2. What else do Christian Fundamentalists like Dominionists and ISIS have in common?

      Both groups see democracies and governments as being against God, both groups want absolutist theocracies ruling their country and the world that enforce only the laws written in their holy book. Both groups want society to go back to the way it was hundreds if not thousands of years ago and both desperately hunger for an Apocolypse that will destroy the human race and the world.

      The concept that by supporting and causing the horrible murders of billions of people, they would get a pat on the back from a grateful Jesus/Mohammed and a 1st Class ticket to heaven, is incomprehensible to any enlightened religious people
      But some Christians and Muslims fiercely believe in that.

      Though they may be shoulder to shoulder on it at this point, where it kind of falls apart is that each group believes that only they will be taken up while the others won’t be (for Dominionists, all but them will go to Hell, for ISIS, only they will be accepted into Heaven).

      If such an end game can be recognized, the paths that such religious extremists take towards bringing about this horrible delusion can be anticipated and undermined.

      Though religion is the primary GPS for Dominionists and ISIS, it may not be such a coincidence that those who are willing to give everything, even their lives in service to bringing along this imagined Apocalypse and Second Coming are principally those living desperate lives.

      To someone helplessly living in Iraq who has had family members murdered by Saddam, an opposing Islamic sect or the U.S., who lives in great poverty and with no hope, the destruction of human existence doesn’t seem like such a terrible thing to happen…especially if the sooner it comes, the sooner one will live forever in Heaven. This is a religious belief though so while desperation may be part of the mix, a version of Islam is as well.

      Those who are disaffected around the world who have been joining ISIS are more typically those who feel alienated and hopeless in their lives. To become apart of something powerful, something that can give them an instant and driving purpose in life that contributes to something as huge as building a new nation and bringing about The Rapture…can be irresistible to such people.

      So ISIS has at its core, its version of Islam that drives it as an organization to see it as a justified mission to murder and dismember innocent people, take over land and terrorize those who don’t follow their beliefs into converting or standing by while they press on.
      Recognizing that they are Islamic is the first step to understanding how to beat them. Political correctness and political pandering to religious voters have become initial enemies for the U.S. to defeat.

      Once the realities of ISIS’ Islamic-based motivations are fully recognized, the U.S. and the rest of the world can build a truly effective strategy to defeat ISIS by attacking the engine that drives them.


    4. .

      But even a broken and racist clock can be right once in a while despite it being for the wrong reason.

      That's as far as I got.


  2. If you take this argument to its logical conclusion you recognize something that first seems to be a startling fact: All these groups, Christian or Muslim believe in a creative destruction.They want to destroy in order to cleanse.It is deeply embedded in their psyche. Many are quite open about it. How many Republicans have you heard say they are in government to destroy government?

    The GOP is out to destroy the country

    1. That the Obama administration has been able to get as much done as it has speaks to the president’s determination to move this nation forward. Yet it’s not enough. Ours is a government that requires two functioning parties that produce good public policy through the necessary friction of governing. Neither party is perfect nor has all the ideas or the answers. But no good comes from a party that gives up completely on governing.

  3. Oh-oh.

    Deuce has gone dark black letter on us with the Washington Compost column 'The GOP is out to destroy the country'. The dark black letter contagion spreads...

    Whatever :(

    Listen up ! --

    April 5, 2015
    NPR: The Deal Struck with Iran Was Not the Deal Announced by President
    By Lev Tsitrin

    NPR aired a fascinating segment Saturday morning. "Iranian and American officials are busy selling the deal back home, but it does seem as if they're talking about two different agreements." "The American description of [termination of sanctions], as portrayed in the State Department's fact sheet on the deal, asserts that no U.N. sanctions can be lifted until Iran completes a hefty list of tasks, including scaling back its enrichment of nuclear fuel, converting a heavy water reactor and an underground enrichment facility, so that no nuclear fuel can be produced and answering long-standing questions about its past nuclear activity." Yet Iran "stated that all sanctions relief – U.N., EU and U.S. – would be immediate. It was unequivocal. It stated that Iran under the deal was free to pursue industrial scale enrichment to fuel its own reactors – unequivocal. It stated that Iran was unhindered in its ability to conduct centrifuge R&D."

    To understand what actually was agreed to, let us put ourselves into negotiators' shoes. On midnight March 31, the deadline passes – yet there is no substantive agreement. There is only a nod to giving it another day's worth of trying. During the next day, there is no agreement either, nor is there one in the offing.

    What to do? Admitting that negotiations to reach the general "framework agreement" failed would render meaningless the June 30 deadline for reaching the detailed agreement. Without the "framework agreement" there is nothing to negotiate. How to save the June 30 deadline without having a March 31 deal -- and without losing face?

    Easy: agree that a framework agreement was agreed on – but do not sign it, and thus simply do not "agree on what they agreed on"!

    Hence, "a senior U.S. official, speaking anonymously because of the sensitivity of the talks, says Secretary of State John Kerry and Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif let each other know in advance that their narratives would be different."

    And this is the only thing one can be sure was agreed on in the much-touted "framework agreement."

    Lookie here - not one of here knows what is actually going on.

    So we all might as well shut up about it until June 30th, 2015. Then we might know something.

    Perhaps, though I strongly doubt it, we will all have something we can celebrate.

    And Iraq will be ISIS free the following week.

    Personally, I rest in full comfort knowing we have "Wendy", a real American, at the wheel.

    1. Here's another good article -

      If the mullahs are caught developing weaponization technology, who will go to war? The U.S.? Obama will not send the U.S. military against Iran, and if the U.S. will not go, no one will. And the mullahs know that. They will not test the first nuclear “device” on Iranian soil. By the time they detonate a nuclear device in Iran (as opposed to North Korea or Pakistan), it will be too late. They will have already have put away a stockpile.

      That being the case, why pursue a better agreement? In reality, the Obama administration is right in saying that the alternative is war. But the alternative to war is not an agreement. The truth is that the alternatives are regime change, war or capitulation to Iran. If Netanyahu were to tell the whole truth, he would have noted that the 5+1 do not seem to be engineering regime change, and he would have asked whether the U.S. and the rest of the 5+1 have decided to capitulate to Iran. If they have not, then would they prefer to go to war now or when Iran is armed with nuclear weapons?

      In fact, it appears that Obama has decided to capitulate. There are reports emanating recently from Jordan that the U.S. has told Arab countries that Iran is to be America’s full partner in the Middle East and they will have to cultivate their relations with the mullahs. (See here, citing Oraib Rantawi, described as a “senior Jordanian commentator, close to the Royal Court.”) If accurate, the realignment of American policy is clearly the impetus behind the sudden Jordan-Iran alliance. It also means that Obama was lying all along about his commitment to prevent Iran from achieving nuclear capability and was in fact protecting the Iranian nuclear project, and that everything, including the sanctions on Iran, was only to forestall Israeli action against Iran........

      April 5, 2015
      What's Bibi's Iran Strategy?
      By J.P. Golbert

      True chaos. Who in the hell knows what is going on ?

      Do the players even know ?

      It's as easy to read too much into developments and statements as it is to read too little into them.

      We desperately need an adult in the White House.

    2. >>> The truth is that the alternatives are regime change, war or capitulation to Iran.<<<

      Obama did not even criticize verbally the shooting of the Iranian protesters in the streets, nor give any support at all to them. So certainly he does not support regime change in Iran.

      And in Egypt he supported the MB who wished to re-militarize the Sinai and impose Sharia Law on the country.

      Thank Christ we have only two more years left of this turd.

  4. >>> Nearly half of the Republican Party are highly motivated religious zealots.<<<


    It's odd then that I've never met one.

    Dad hardly ever went to church, wasn't a believer, voted Republican all his life.

    His Jewish partner never went to synagogue, voted Republican his entire life.

    What we do know is that the Democratic Party these days is wholly composed of commies, moslems, the perpetual unemployed, grafters, tricksters, college short, the members who compose it are:

    >>The members who composed it were, seven-eighths of them, the meanest kind of bawling and blowing office-holders, office-seekers, pimps, malignants, conspirators, murderers, fancy-men, custom-house clerks, contractors, kept-editors, spaniels well-train’d to carry and fetch, jobbers, infidels, disunionists, terrorists, mail-riflers, slave-catchers, pushers of slavery, creatures of the President, creatures of would-be Presidents, spies, bribers, compromisers, lobbyers, sponges, ruin’d sports, expell’d gamblers, policy-backers, monte-dealers, duellists, carriers of conceal’d weapons, deaf men, pimpled men, scarr’d inside with vile disease, gaudy outside with gold chains made from the people’s money and harlots’ money twisted together; crawling, serpentine men, the lousy combings and born freedom-sellers of the earth.

    And whence came they? From back-yards and bar-rooms; from out of the customhouses, marshals’ offices, post-offices, and gambling-hells; from the President’s house, the jail, the station-house; from unnamed by-places, where devilish disunion was hatch’d at midnight; from political hearses, and from the shrouds inside, and from the shrouds inside of the coffins; from the tumors and abscesses of the land; from the skeletons and skulls in the vaults of the federal almshouses; and from the running sores of the great cities. Such, I say, form’d, or absolutely control’d the forming of, the entire personnel, the atmosphere, nutriment and chyle, of our municipal, State, and National politics;substantially permeating, handling, deciding, and wielding everything; legislation, nominations, elections, “public sentiment,” etc.;while the great masses of the people, farmers, mechanics, and traders, were helpless in their gripe. . - Walt Whitman on the Democratic Party Convention.<<<

    Be behovely my lovelies:

    "it behooves you to convey yourself implicitly to no party"

    Walt Whitman

    But for God's sakes don't let Hillary become President.

    1. Walt was, in a way, kinda, a bit, a little, a tad on the Democratic side of the party debate of his day, though unwilling 'to convey himself implicitly to any party', thinking that the Democrats were more for the bulk of the people, but that the Republicans had by far the higher quality type of people.

      He loved Lincoln. And thought him the very best of men, a man of the highest quality of his day. A man for the ages.

      And would have found the slander of Lincoln as being sexually and emotionally perverted the ravings of madmen.

    2. Only one country in the Americas under one elected politician was incapable of ending slavery without a war. The genius was A. Lincoln. That avoidable war cost over 600,000 lives, adjusting for population growth, that would be 6 million people. The cost of the war is still being paid for today. Lincoln could have bought every slave at the market price and saved half the monetary cost of the war.

      The US Army disgraced itself by committing war crimes against American civilians.

      The war caused untold economic damage and ruined the lives of millions.

      If that is not madness, the term is meaningless. The slander is to the concept of truth.

      Lincoln stands alone for the responsibility of mass killings and destruction of fellow Americans, their lives, their liberty, their property and wealth. He was a miserable human being that died five years too late.

    3. >>> Nearly half of the Republican Party are highly motivated religious zealots.<<<


      It’s odd then that I’ve never met one.

      I could, but I won’t.

    4. Heh

      I must admit your views don't totally track with the typical leftie profile.

      Lincoln the sexual pervert and war criminal.

      And he didn't even start the war.

      The Rebs did.

      Did you know the Secesh River in Idaho

      was named for/by a bunch of secessionists in memory of the secession who moved out this way after the Civil War ?

      Moved into the Boise Basin, mostly.

      I am amazed to have just found out it is only 27 miles in length.

    5. Notice they named it the Secesh or Secession River, and not the River of the War of Northern Aggression, or Aggression River.

    6. Depends upon your definition of 'start', robert "Draft Dodger" Peterson.

      The first military movement, was for Abe to send the Army into Virginia, which was soundly defeated by the rebel rabble.
      The firing on Fort Sumter, that was not the 'start' of the war, just the first shots that were publicly acknowledged, in the agitprop of the North.

      The occupation of the Fort by hostile forces, an affront to South Carolinians.
      But it was the continued occupation of the Fort, the fact that the Federals did not abandon it, that is what 'started' the War.

  5. .

    The GOP is out to destroy the country

    Why would they want to destroy the country when it has been so good to them?


    1. Pretty good question there, Quirk.

      Why would they indeed?

  6. .

    Lookie here - not one of here knows what is actually going on.

    So we all might as well shut up about it until June 30th, 2015.


    [Though you say it, I doubt you will do it.]